Julius John Pfannenstiel, age 90, died unexpectedly on Tuesday, July 21, 2015 doing what he enjoyed the most, tending to his yard. Julie was no stranger to hard work. Born on December 10, 1924, to Mike and Eva Pfannenstiel, he was the 9th of 12 children. He often told of being farmed out each summer beginning at age five, to milk cows at a dairy farm 50 miles from his home on the plains of Kansas. He and all of his siblings worked hard as young children to support their family, a work ethic that he would proudly pass on to all of his own children.
Julie joined the Navy in 1943 and served his country along with seven of his brothers and one brother-in-law in World War II and the Korean War. Against the odds, all of them made it safely home.
It was in Hays, Kansas that he met and married his loving wife of 67 years, Esther Glassman. Julie and Esther left Kansas at a young age and headed to Colorado, where they lived for 26 years and raised their family in the country near the eastern slope of the Rockies. They had three sons and one daughter, David, Darrell, Dean, and Donna. Julie worked long hours 7 days a week, yet could often be seen batting baseballs to his sons on a summer evening, teaching his kids to saddle a horse and ride, working on their cars, or breaking a young colt in the corral.
Julie began a long and rewarding career with Adolf Coors Company, first working on Coors Feedlot near Longmont, and then in 1975, becoming an agronomist for Coors in the state of Montana. He was loyal to Coors his entire life, and served many an ice cold mug from his basement bar. It was a place all could gather to laugh, toast, tell jokes, and share endless and sometimes embellished stories. Julie had a grand sense of humor and never tired of entertaining any audience he could capture. He was the only one allowed behind his bar, and the empty bar stool he used can never be filled by a man of finer virtue.
Julie was an excellent cook. He spent hours in the kitchen after he retired, brewing up jars of homemade salsa, batches of green chili, homemade German sausage, and biscuits and gravy. When his grandchildren were young he would often have everyone over for breakfast after church. His family being together always put a twinkle in his eye. The annual fishing trip on the Bighorn River with his brothers, children, grandchildren, and nephews will hold fond memories for all involved. Every get together included great food, great libations, great conversation, and laughter beyond.
Julie had a deep and abiding faith in God and spent hours praying for his friends and family. A long standing member of Saint Thomas Catholic Church, Julie was active helping with food baskets for the needy during the holidays, ushering, and taking up collection. He also volunteered at St. Vincent’s hospital for over 20 years. He gave more than he took his entire life, and taught all of us lessons of life and love that we will never forget.
Julie is survived by his wife Esther, his sons Dave (Linda), Darrell (Pauline), and Dean Pfannenstiel, his daughter Donna Fredericks (Pat Bettise), grandchildren Mike(Lisa) and Jamie Pfannenstiel, Casey(Michele), Kenny (Sara), and Kevin (Alysha) Pfannenstiel, Christine Clark, Beau (Corrie), Jess, and Delaney Fredericks, 13 great grandchildren, his brothers Frank(Cecelia), Marvin (Jane) Pfannenstiel and sisters Martina Staab and Aggie (Jim) Miller, as well as over 80 nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents and seven of his siblings.
Funeral services will be Monday at 10:00 am at St Thomas the Apostle Church with a vigil Sunday evening at 7:00 at Michelotti-Sawyers Mortuary. Memorials can be made to St. Vincent de Paul or a charity of one’s choice.